Information compiled and wriiten by Leroy Mathers and W.G. Adams, courtesy of Lester Adams, his son.

xxxThe 1880 census of Chase County shows a population of 70 people. The oldest person on the list was 65 years old. She was Minerva Lawton of Wauneta, mother of Mrs. Geo Rowley, whose husband was murdered by a Cheyenne Chief in 1878. Mrs. Rowley appears on the list as Sarah Rowley and she has two children, Eddie, age 8, and Earl, age 3. By 1890 with the coming of the homesteaders, our population had grown to 4,807.
xxxFeb. 8, 1910, the county commissioners met in special session — an emergency existing because of the burning of the court house. The Imperial Republican dated Fri., Oct. 21, 1910, states the court house burned Feb. 2, 1910. The paper also reports that a new Court house will be constructed and says, “It will be the best court house in the Fourteenth Judicial District.”
xxxRecord shows an entry made July 28, 1911, E. Hollinger is paid $232 for the use of blood hounds to search for the culprit who knocked a hole in the clerk’s old vault and set fire to the records.
xxxThe county voted for a bond issue of $25,000 to construct a new court house. The contract for the building is recorded June 7, 1911, awarded to Winters and Short of Atwood, Kansas, and the bid for the heating plant was awarded to Frank Peterson of Red Cloud, Ne.
xxxIt was after the county was organized, but before a court house was provided, when fires began to interfer with county business and raise havoc with records. The first Court house building was given to the county by the Lincon Land Co. in 1889. This structure was also burned down in Feb. 1910. The vaults remained standing. A temporary frame building was ordered, and a few months later, a fire was set and did considerable damage. Record of meeting on Feb. 9, 1910 shows: “It being very evident that the fire that destroyed the Court House was of incendary origin, we hereby offer a reward of $300 for the arrest and conviction of the party or parties who set said fire.”

Nebraska Tourism Imperial, Nebraska Wauneta, Nebraska Champion, Nebraska Enders, Nebraska Lamar, Nebraska Chase County Nebraska Contact Us Imperial Chamber Great Plains Communications